Getting to Work

by Adam Robinson

Some mornings, though, I stand on the step and wonder what I'm supposed to do.

I have done everything and locked the door behind me.

I lock my wife in the house.

This is so that when she comes to drive me out, she will first need to unlock the door.

In this way, I know she will find my keys and bring them to me.

In this way, I know I can re-enter later.

This, accomplished, I know not what to do.

The thing is that I use her keys to start the car, to warm the engine.

Then when I hop out at the office, her still driving, she is left with her own keys.

And I don't know how long it will be until she comes outside and figures it all out.

Figures me out.

I can negotiate this departure so that I don't leave my keys, but when I'm done I stand there confused.

I see that there is a lot of trash along the curb, and I could turn off the car, unlock the door, return to that unlit vault.

Fetch the broom and sweep up the trash.

The broom has been used to this end so often that there is no end. All of the bristles have broken off.

Look, a ratty clump of straw at the bottom of a pole.

Then she comes out and hands me my keys.

For now, we're going to work.